Do you ever feel like there is supposed to be a little bit more to life?
I guess I’ve always felt that way—like I didn’t want my life to be small and quiet. I didn’t want to be one of those people that always said I was “busy” when asked how I was, knowing that “busy” was just a term for spinning my wheels doing the same damn thing over and over again.
In the time B.K. (before kids) I worked really hard to distinguish myself. I got straight ‘A’s in school. I got a master’s degree in singing. I traveled the world as a performer. Life had its ups and downs, but it was definitely rarely boring.
I became a suburban housewife
In my 30s, though, I fell into the life we’re all ‘supposed’ to live. I settled down in the suburbs. I got married. I became a housewife. I had a baby and became pregnant again less than two years later. Sure, I strove to be the best darn housewife ever. I cherished being home with my guys, but I knew that wasn’t the whole of my life’s purpose.
I felt like I’d lost myself in all the noise of motherhood. Every day was a hamster wheel of doing the same mundane tasks again and again. Every night, I looked around and felt like I’d accomplished nothing. I filled my few quiet moments with time wasters that didn’t feed my soul.
I worried only about whether my house was clean, whether my kids were happy, and whether my husband (who regularly worked more than 80 hours a week and traveled more than half of the year) had what he needed.
My World Got Turned Upside-Down
Then I got breast cancer. If you want lots of time to focus on yourself, that’s one way to get it. It whipped me back into shape and reminded me that we aren’t promised 100 years here on this earth.
I realized that if I wanted to live a life I loved, I had to get busy. I began to regularly spend time on calming my mind, improving my attitude, and feeding my soul. As I regained my health, I started to ask myself whether the life we’d fallen into was right for our family and how we could build a life that suited us all better.
As my fellow moms, know, though, mom life doesn’t stop—even when we’re sick, or tired, or going through an identity crisis. Babies still need us. Boo-boos still need kissed. Toilet paper rolls still need changed. If I was going to make my life extraordinary, I knew I had to get really efficient with the momming part of the equation.
I Began Hacking Mom Life
Gradually I’ve streamlined the work I need to do at home, maximized my free moments here and there, and reminded myself that I can think outside the box. In the last few years, I’ve picked up (and put down) some new hobbies, bought (and sold) our first home, taught singing lessons out of that home (and taken my business on the road), and gotten rid of almost all of our stuff to try out life as a nomadic family. It turns out that there’s still a lot more life left in this 43-year-old-mom.
So, How Can I Help You, Fellow Mama?
Here at Mama Goes Beyond, I focus a lot on hacks for moms who want to make life easier. It’s impossible to design a life you’ll love when you’re drowning in housework, mess, noise, and chaos. (And without really being mindful about it, most of us would be drowning!) Because homeschooling has been a real gift for our family—allowing us lots of quality time together and giving us total control over our schedule and location—I write about it a lot, too.
My passion, though, is helping myself and my fellow mamas to get our mom brains straight. We don’t need to be scattered, distracted and cranky. Living intentionally isn’t something that has to stop just because our responsibilities have increased exponentially. It’s still important to define and remember our life’s purpose—even when it’s been edited to include those adorable little people.
Do you share my philosophy?
I’d love to have you join my Mom Tribe
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Got a few minutes to read?
Here are some posts you might enjoy.
- Exhausted mamas should check out this post about How to Play with Your Kids While Lying Down or this one about 50 Time-Saving Tips for Moms
- Overwhelmed mamas might like this post about How to Find Your Motivation as a SAHM or How to Clear Mental Clutter and Banish Your Mom Brain
- Mamas who are anxious about traveling with their kids might enjoy these tips for Flying with Kids Under 5 or this advice for Riding the Subway with Kids
- Homeschooling mamas might like this advice for Creating a Simple Homeschool Schedule or Making Sure Your Homeschooled Kid Isn’t Lonely
- Mamas who are feeling unsatisfied with their lives might try How to Rediscover Yourself After Motherhood or Showing the Good Parts: Why Social Media is a Lie, and What You can do About It
Some Final fun facts about me:
- In the summer of 2019, our family sold our house and got rid of most of our possessions in order to have the freedom to travel long term.
- I performed Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical CATS over 400 times on a North and South American tour.
- My husband and I made our own wedding rings, and they’re engraved inside with the airport codes of the cities that were important to the development of our relationship (TYO, HKG, SAO, WAS, and PHL).
- I was a vegetarian for 20 years, but I started craving meat when I was pregnant with my older son, and I’ve never looked back.
- I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 37, while 34 weeks pregnant with my second child.
- I ran a marathon in 2017 with six months of training, having never run regularly before.
- I’ve been to 48 of the 50 states and 4 of the 7 continents, and I can’t believe how much of the world I have left to see.
- This quote from Henry David Thoreau has been rattling around in my head since I was 16, and I love it so much that I regularly contemplate getting a tattoo that says “Marrow Sucker”.
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms…”